When you want the taste of Japanese curry…without the fuss of cutlery.

One of Japan’s most popular soul foods is a big bowl of steaming hot curry rice. Great in winter, when the stew-like dish warms the cockles of your soul, and also recommended in summer, when the spices are believed to cool your body, every day is a good day to eat curry in Japan.

Now, though, thanks to beverage maker Pokka Sapporo, we don’t just get to eat curry, we get to drink it as well.

This new take on the nation’s beloved dish is a drink called Curry na Kibun Chukara (which loosely translates to “I’m In the Mood for Medium-Spicy Curry”). As the name suggests, this is a drink for those times when you find yourself in the mood for curry, and you want something to satiate that need fast.

▼ This 170-gram (6-ounce) serving allows you to guzzle down Japanese curry in smooth liquid form.

With the bottle saying it contains “10 different spices” — sourced from Pokka’s sister company Yasuma, makers of the popular line of Mascot cooking spices — we couldn’t help but wonder if this would burn the throat as it went down.

▼ Looking at the back of the can, we saw a note that read “drinking can”, confirming that this was a product that belonged in the drinks category.

We were definitely in the mood for curry now, so we went to twist off the lid of the wide-mouthed resealable can, where we saw instructions recommending the product be shaken well before opening.

So shake we did, and because we wanted to get a good look at the liquid inside, we poured the curry out into a mug, where we found that there were no lumpy bits of vegetable to be found. This was pure curry soup, with a caramel hue and silky looking texture.

The cans are sold hot in vending machines and at room temperature in stores, and seeing as we bought ours at the supermarket, where it was sitting on a shelf, we needed to heat ours up to try it hot.

▼ We carefully heated the liquid up in the microwave for a few seconds until it was suitably hot.

It smelt like the familiar curry rice we know and love, and when we took a sip, we were surprised to find…it was as smooth as water! The flavour of curry was brilliant – moreish and with just the right amount of spice to add complexity to the mix without burning the throat.

This made it super easy to drink, and thankfully there was no spicy heat to burn the throat as it went down. It was like a mild curry soup, flavoured with vegetables, beef, pork, and 10 kinds of spices, which made it great on its own, but also ideal for pairing with bread or rice balls, to create a more substantial meal-on-the-go.

The lightness of the soup was fantastic, and it was delightfully refreshing and not salty at all. However, when we tried another can of soup at room temperature, we found things were a little different.

Taking a sip of the room-temperature curry revealed it to be incredibly weak by comparison. The aroma was faint, the spice flavour totally dialled back, and the main impression we got from it was that it tasted quite salty.

Being the thorough taste-testers we are, we whipped out a third can, which had been chilling in the refrigerator. This was much better than the room-temperature version, as it was more like a cold soup, and unlike regular curry, which forms a film on the surface when chilled, there was no such film or separation of liquid here.

▼ The glossy surface of the soup turned out to be impressive in all three temperature scenarios.

Drinking the liquid out of the can, rather than pouring it into a mug or bowl, is the best way to enjoy this unusual beverage, as it blows your mind to taste the familiar taste of curry coming out of such an unconventional receptacle.

▼ It really makes you feel like you’re drinking a curry beverage, rather than sipping on curry soup!

It’s the perfect drink for keeping hunger pangs at bay or when you’re in the mood for adding a little bit of curry to your lunch. Now that we don’t need cutlery to enjoy curry anymore, we’ll be stocking up on these for the office, and hopefully the “medium spicy” is just the first of more varieties to come!

Priced at 140 yen (US$1.27) plus tax, the Curry na Kibun Chukara is a fun and delicious drink that curry fans will definitely fall in love with, unlike the Curry Bread Cider, which our reporters hope to never taste ever again.

Related: Pokka Sapporo
Images © SoraNews24
● Want to hear about SoraNews24’s latest articles as soon as they’re published? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

[ Read in Japanese ]